Maintaining Your Oral Health through Winter Months

We all know that winter's approach includes lower temperatures, sharp winds, and dry air-- all conditions that hurt the skin. What many people do not know is that winter conditions also adversely affect oral health. Knowing about winter oral health worries, keeping a good habit of oral hygiene and getting regular checkups at UNO DENTAL can keep your teeth and mouth happy and healthy all throughout the year. For a better idea of just what winter concerns to be aware of for your mouth, keep reading.

Cold Sores

These little blisters on the mouth and lips may be viral in origin but can also show up due to seasonal illnesses or cold weather. You can avoid most of this by using lip balm with sunscreen, granting UV protection and hydration to your mouth and the skin surrounding it.

Some other advice would be to minimize bacterial and viral susceptibility by regularly washing hands, minimizing finger-to-mouth contact and never sharing utensils or towels with people suffering from cold sores. If you suspect you have a cold sore, speak with your doctor or dentist and consider grabbing an over-the-counter medication.

Chapped Lips

It can be challenging to protect your mouth from the elements while outdoors in winter but cold weather dries out the lips. Keep your lips moisturized with some petroleum jelly and keep them safe with some lip balm enhanced with sunscreen.

Dry Mouth

Less ambient moisture means less saliva in the mouth, which leads to dryness. Regularly drinking water can pick up the slack, providing enough fluid to wash away particulates and decay-causing oral bacteria. You may also consider using a humidifier to raise the moisture level at home.

Tooth Sensitivity

Lower temperatures raise sensitivity; even cold air can induce pain in sensitive teeth. If your teeth are sensitive, use a toothpaste specialized for enhanced sensitivity.

Gum Infection

Seasonal ailments like the cold and flu can hurt your immune system's effectiveness, leaving the body less able to fight off bacterial activity within the gums. Maintain a good dental care routine at home to keep your gums healthy and come see us at UNO DENTAL if you notice any swelling, blood or pain around your gums.

Jaw Pain

Cold weather causes tightness of the joints and muscles, even in the jaw. Anyone with temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder is at a greater disadvantage here. To keep your jaw comfortable, keep your body warm and consider something like a scarf to keep the jaw area warm.

Keep Up Oral Hygiene Habits

A good routine is brushing twice a day, flossing once a day, replacing your brush every three to four months and after illnesses and visiting a dentist every six months.

Reach Out for Help

Whether you have concerns about any of these issues or just need a regular check-up, please do not hesitate to reach out to UNO DENTAL by calling or through our online form. We have been reinforcing and restoring smiles in the San Francisco, California area for over five years.

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